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On our own behalf – The Beer Monopoly on the Forbes List „Best Booze Books of 2017“

We are speechless. Surprised. Humbled. Incredibly grateful. Our book The Beer Monopoly appears on this year`s Forbes List "Best Booze Books". No, no, it`s not the Forbes Rich List. Fat chance of us ever getting on to that one.
The list was compiled by Tara Nurin and can be found here >>


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Posted January 2020

 

Germany – Beer sales continue downward trend

A hot summer is no longer enough to boost sales. In 2019 beer sales are forecasted to have dropped more than 2 percent to 85.2 million hl. This equals the shuttering of a large German brewery. What has made the year-on-year comparison particularly tough is the fact that 2018 was an unusually good year for brewers. The long warm summer and the soccer world cup made for a higher beer consumption – about 0.5 percent or 500,000 hl over 2017. Read on


Germany – Jürgen Klopp becomes Erdinger’s brand ambassador

The one and only Jürgen Klopp, Manager of the Champions League winner Liverpool FC, has become Erdinger’s brand ambassador. The partnership was announced on 29 December 2019, the day Erdinger’s owner Werner Brombach celebrated his 80th birthday with over 1,000 guests. Read on


Germany – Wheat beer sales under pressure

If Hell beers and other specialties increase sales in an overall shrinking market, something has to give. In this case, wheat beers. Long ranked second most popular beer style behind pils, wheat beer has seen its position snatched away by Helles in 2019. In 2018, pils remained Germans‘ most sought after beer style, with a market share slightly over 50 percent. Wheat beer and Export (a German style) came in second with 7 percent market share each, followed by Hell or Helles (6 percent). All this changed in 2019. Thanks to its increasing popularity, Helles continued its sales hike and seriously dented wheat beer sales. Read on


USA – Brewers Association expects 300 brewery closures in 2019

Even with New Belgium’s volumes deleted from the Brewers Association’s table, the industry organisation expects craft beer volumes to have grown about 4 percent or 1 million barrels in 2019. Between 2016 and 2019, craft beer growth has slowed and volumes have grown at single-digits only. Read on


Australia – Coopers hikes sales but suffers hit in profits

Price competition in a crowded beer market, combined with higher costs, have eaten into the profit of Coopers, Australia’s major independent brewer. Total beer sales rose 2 percent to nearly 770,000 hl, but pre-tax profit dropped 33 percent to AUD 23.1 million. Also, container deposit schemes (cash for empty cans and bottles) have cost Coopers about AUD 3 (USD 2.10) per carton of beer. In theory, beverage producers should have passed the costs of the container deposit schemes on to their customers, by increasing prices between AUD 3 to AUD 5 for a 24-drink carton. However, stiff competition in the Australian beer and beverage market, as well as worries over declining sales in the off-premise, have forced producers to absorb these costs themselves. This has had a detrimental effect on their profits. Read on


Australia – Two standard alcoholic drinks a day no longer safe

Dry January is upon us. Those still imbibing may want to take note of Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC). Its new tougher guideline recommends no more than 1.4 drinks per day. The NHMRC’s new guidelines on drinking alcohol say that adults should have no more than 10 standard drinks a week – or roughly 1.4 per day – to reduce health risks. 1.4 standard drinks equal 375 ml of a full-strength beer or 150 ml of white wine. The maximum an adult should have on a single day is four standard drinks. In the past, the recommended quantity was two standard drinks per day. Read on

 

USA – Kirin’s purchase of New Belgium okayed despite Myanmar links

New Belgium is no longer employee owned and can no longer be considered an independent craft brewer, after employees/shareholders approved of the sale to Australia’s brewer Lion on 17 December 2019. Lion is part of Kirin, a Japanese beverage firm. Incidentally, New Belgium declined to disclose the number of employees who voted, or a breakdown on how they voted. Read on


USA – Ethics in business: from Myanmar to Fort Collins

Consider this: Kirin’s purchase of craft brewer New Belgium did more to raise international awareness about Kirin’s political balancing in Myanmar than previous reports by the United Nations and Amnesty International.

In 2015, Kirin paid USD 560 million for a 55 percent stake in Myanmar Brewery, the country’s major brewer. The remaining stake is held by Myanmar Economic Holdings Limited (MEHL), a military-owned conglomerate, which is led by commander-in-chief Min Aung Hlaing. As says the Financial Times, he is accused of leading military-backed ethnic cleansing against Rohingya Muslims in 2017, that sent more than 730,000 fleeing into Bangladesh amid reports of mass killings, rapes, and arson. Read on


Myanmar – Hitting the headlines: reputational risks for foreign firms

Multinational companies doing business in the south-east Asian country could be facing risks to their reputation, following criticisms of Kirin’s partnership with a military-linked conglomerate. Kirin’s commercial dilemma is not unique.

It boils down to this: Shall foreign companies take on partners linked to a military, which has been accused for years of corruption, land-grabbing and human rights abuses, or shall they not do business at all in Myanmar? The EU, along with the US, lifted most sanctions against Myanmar after 2011, to encourage the transition to democracy from almost half a century of military dictatorship. Read on


Australia – Regulator concerned about sale of CUB to Asahi

The country’s competition watchdog ACCC has raised concerns over the USD 11 billion deal by AB-InBev to sell its local unit CUB to Japan’s Asahi. AB-InBev acquired Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) from SABMiller in 2016. In a preliminary statement, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said on 12 December 2019 that the deal would reduce competition in the cider market and may also do so in the beer market. Read on



Japan – Asahi to stop disclosing data for volume sales

Asahi Breweries will report beer sales by value rather than volume, starting with 2019 data. This will allow it to bow out of a costly battle for market share in Japan and free up resources for expansion abroad. As was reported by the Nikkei Asian Review on 18 December 2019, Asahi’s President Kenichi Shiozawa projects a steep plunge in the size of Japan’s beer market from 2030 onwards. Therefore, Asahi will need to move away from an obsession with volume sales and market share. Read on



USA – Congress extends brewers’ tax relief for one year

The Brewers Association (BA) has expressed its gratitude to the 116th Congress for extending the current Federal Excise Tax (FET) rates for breweries and beer importers for one year (2020). President Trump’s two-year long tax relief for brewers, issued in 2017, was to expire on 1 January 2020 unless Congress acted by 31 December 2019. At the last minute, on 20 December 2019, congressional leaders extended the relief for another year, thus acknowledging the profound impact the reduced excise tax rate has had on the growth of a uniquely American industry, the BA said. Read on

 

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